RARE Daily

Horizon Awards First Horizon Prize to ThinkGenetic, Congenica, for Work to Accelerate Diagnosis of Rare Diseases

September 21, 2021

Horizon Therapeutics, in collaboration with MIT Solve, a marketplace for social impact innovation, named ThinkGenetic and Congenica winners of the first Horizon prize for their solutions for reducing the time it takes to be diagnosed with a rare disease.

Photo: Tim Walbert, chairman, president and CEO, Horizon

The two winners will share the $150,000 in funding to continue to evolve their solutions.

The Horizon Prize is a global innovation challenge focused on speeding diagnosis and care for people impacted by rare disease. This year, visionaries, academics and inventors from a pool of more than 138,000 individuals in more than 137 countries set out to solve, “How can technology help people with rare diseases get the right care faster and more accurately?”

ThinkGenetic uses genetic counselor curated algorithms to search health records to identify at-risk rare disease patients and educate them and their physicians on the condition, and how to get tested, diagnosed, and treated. Once identified, it works with the hospital system to educate physicians and patients on what the condition is, how to test for it, treat and manage it.

ThinkGenetic plans to use this funding to expand ThinkGenetic to support more genetic conditions.

Congenica uses software to analyze next-generation sequencing data to provide a free-of-charge diagnostic solution for people from disadvantaged groups affected by rare conditions. In doing so, it also creates an unbiased data system that will help improve its diagnostic models.

According to Congenica, ethnic minorities are likely to experience barriers to screening, diagnosis and treatment due to a variety of cultural and socioeconomic factors. This funding would allow Congenica to provide free access to its platform for the analysis and diagnosis of thousands of ethnic minority patients.

“Estimates indicate rare disease patients spend nearly five years going to appointments, getting tests and seeing multiple healthcare providers before their disease is accurately diagnosed—this is unacceptable,” said Tim Walbert, chairman, president, and CEO, Horizon. “We are inspired by the ingenuity behind ThinkGenetic and Congenica to improve time to diagnosis and the potential to improve quality of life for the nearly 400 million people affected by rare disease worldwide.”

Author: Rare Daily Staff

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